A closing charge from Clondaw Warrior proved too late as Da Big Hoss made it four wins from his last five starts with victory in the Grade 3 American St. Leger Stakes at Arlington Park this evening.
A field of ten horses lined up for this contest run over an unusually long one mile, five furlongs and 100 yards long distance in American racing.
As the gates crashed open it was O’Prado Ole who went on from a wide berth and quickly moved across to the inside rail.
Settling down and taking the first bend, O’Prado Ole led from two Europeans: Wasir and Billabong, with a yawning gap back to the rest of the field, who were led by Da Big Hoss.
That was the order passing the post and turning out with a circuit to race.
Heading down the back straight, O’Prado Ole led Wasir and Billabong, but the gap had reduced back to Da Big Hoss and with three furlongs to race, the pace increased significantly.
Wasir moved into the lead at the top of the straight and turned into the home stretch in front but was passed by Da Big Hoss who went a couple of lengths clear, with Clondaw Warrior staying on from miles back.
However, the Irish horse’s late charge was in vain as Da Big Hoss and Florent Geroux kept up the gallop all the way to the line.
Clondaw Warrior got up to head German runner Wasir for second, with Montclair back in fourth.
“He just loves to win, he always finds a way, it doesn’t matter where he is in the race,” said Geroux on NBC.
“I got a great trip and no-one tried any funny business, which can happen when you ride a favourite.
“Earlier I won a race wire-to-wire and this time I can from off the pace, the track is great.”
Connections of the winner are now considering a tilt at the Melbourne Cup.
He would be the first American to run in the race if the ambitious plan comes to fruition.